South Korea

Teach in South Korea Basics

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Information for term Teach in South Korea Basics

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

February 1, 2020

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Program Fee: $1,350
  • Compensation: 2,100,000-2,700,000 won (approx. $1,900-2,400)/month plus housing

Application Deadline

November 1, 2019

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Program Fee: $1,350
  • Compensation: 2,100,000-2,700,000 won (approx. $1,900-2,400)/month plus housing


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Do you already have teaching credentials or TEFL certification?

If so, this may be the program for you.  You’ll get all the great benefits of our Teach in South Korea program - support from CIEE, generous pay, rent-free housing, subsidized health insurance, and even airfare - and without the TEFL certification course, the program fee is lower. Teaching placements are at private and public institutions across the country - giving you a close-up look at South Korean customs and culture.

No teaching credentials? Check out Teach in South Korea.

Term Start Date Deadline Duration Compensation
Fall 2 Semester August/September February 1 12 months 2,100,000-2,700,000 won (approx. $1,900-2,400)/month plus housing
Spring 2 Semester  February November 1 12 months 2,100,000-2,700,000 won (approx. $1,900-2,400)/month plus housing

About Our Program Fees

CIEE, a non-profit organization, has been sending university graduates abroad to teach English since 1997. Our Basics program in South Korea includes orientation in Seoul, emergency insurance, and a high level of support throughout your experience (see all features below). To cover those costs, there is a program fee of $1,350. Once we accept your application, there is a $500 deposit to reserve your spot and start your job search. The second and final payment ($850) is due a few months later after you accept a job offer from a Korean school. CIEE alumni receive a 5% discount!

What's included

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What's included

  • Job placement
  • Pre-departure assistance – including visa assistance
  • One year of iNext international insurance with 24-hour emergency assistance services
  • Support and advice from CIEE representatives in Korea
  • Orientation weekend in Seoul
  • Airport pickup and transport to your assignment on arrival
  • Contract completion bonus equal to one month's salary

The Destination

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Participants are placed in cities and suburban areas throughout South Korea. Teaching assignments are available in the Seoul metropolitan area, but they are often more competitive and are not always available to inexperienced teachers.

Many teachers are placed in the following cities:

  • Busan, the country’s second-largest city, draws many international conventions and foreign visitors.
  • Ulsan, on the south-eastern coast, is an industrial powerhouse with the energy of a robust economy.
  • Daegu enjoys a subtropical climate ideal for producing high-quality apples, thus its nickname, "Apple City.” It is also a notable center for Korean fashion.
  • Daejeon, in the center of the country, has 18 universities and is a center of advanced technology.
  • Gwangju is another large, culturally rich city in the south of the country.
  • The greater Seoul area is one of the largest metropolitan disctricts in the world and includes the nearby cities of Bucheon, Incheon, Suwon City, Gunpo, and Namyangju.
  • Each year, we have other interesting locations not included on this list!

The Take-Aways

  • Compensation

    Rent-free housing with basic amenities, competitive salary, airfare, South Korean-national medical insurance benefits.

  • Preparation

    Detailed pre-departure guides on topics like phones, cultural differences and advice from former teachers, plus an orientation and networking weekend in Seoul.

  • Assistance

    Pre-departure guidance, international medical insurance and 24-hour worldwide assistance with CIEE iNext, in-country support from resident staff members.

Job Description

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Job Description

With CIEE in South Korea, you have the opportunity to teach English in a society that's eager to learn the language. It’s a culture where academic achievement is highly valued, and you’re sure to encounter enthusiastic students!

First-year teachers in South Korea will work with young children, but you'll be surprised by how advanced they are! If you’re excited to be a language and cultural ambassador for South Korea’s youngest learners, you’re sure to succeed.

CIEE places English teachers at two types of schools in South Korea: Public and Private. Most Korean students attend both types of schools to help them meet high expectations for educational achievement.

Read on to learn more and find out which type is the best fit for you! If you’re not sure which one you’re qualified for, don’t hesitate to give us a call – we’re happy to help you.

Compensation & Benefits

Regardless of the type of school where you are placed, the Teach in Korea program offers an outstanding package when it comes to salary and benefits.

You will earn 2,100,000-2,700,000 won (approx. $1,900-2,400) per month and receive rent-free housing from your school. You’ll have a small deduction each month for Korean taxes, but you’ll be enrolled in Korea’s National Health Insurance which delivers excellent care at very low prices. There’s also a contract completion bonus equal to one month’s salary at the end of your program.

These high wages will let you save large amounts of money each month instead of spending it on rent and transportation!

  • EPIK Public Schools

    CIEE is proud to partner with the EPIK public school program sponsored by the Korean government. EPIK offers 12 month contracts starting either in late February or late August each year.

    Teachers at public schools work side-by-side with a Korean co-teacher most of the time, although they still have full responsibility for the class. They normally have 20-25 teaching hours each week, not counting prep time, meetings or free periods at their school. A typical contract offers 20-25 vacation days per year on a fixed schedule. Class sizes are usually 20-30 students.

    If you’re planning to apply to public schools, there are additional application materials you’ll need to prepare. Submit your CIEE Teach Abroad application as soon as you can to give yourself plenty of time, and be sure to discuss EPIK’s instructions for letters with your recommenders. EPIK applicants must have their bachelor’s degree in their physical possession no later than May 30th for Fall departures or January 1st for Spring departures. If the degree is in a field other than Education, they must also have a valid teacher’s license or have completed a TEFL/TESOL certification at least two weeks prior to the start date.

    EPIK assigns candidates to a province or metro area before departure. Specific school assignments within those areas are not made until the end of the in-country orientation. EPIK will reimburse teachers for one-way airfare to Korea with their first paycheck.

  • Private Schools

    Private schools offer more control over location, as well as more flexibility around start dates. Most teachers start their 12 month contracts in July, August, September, or February, but a few positions are available outside of those peak months.

    These schools often have schedules in the afternoon or evening, to allow students to attend classes after they finish their public school day. This means that most teachers will work hours like 11-7 or 2-10 at least a few days per week.

    Participants at private schools are lead teachers with full responsibility for their classes. They have a heavier workload: 30 classroom teaching hours each week, not counting prep time, meetings or other obligations like lunch supervision. A typical contract offers 10-15 vacation days per year on a fixed schedule. Class sizes are smaller than public schools, usually 8-15 students.

    Private schools are more flexible about eligibility requirements than public schools; they may accept applications from candidates with substantial teaching experience even if they don’t have TEFL or an education degree.

What People are Saying

  • CIEE makes it incredibly easy to navigate the various steps in the application process. Additionally the constant access to the placement team is extremely helpful.

    Kerry H. | Teach in South Korea
  • It's a great program that makes for a "no fuss" adventure. The tutor and the coordinators are so helpful. I love this company.

    Manuel Y. | Teach in South Korea
  • Very helpful in finding what school would best fit my needs and very reachable.

    Ethan T. | Teach in South Korea
  • CIEE made the application process easy and offered assistance in finding a placement in Korea. As well, the inservice help has been prompt and helped to connect me with other teachers in Korea.

    Glenn F. | Teach in South Korea
  • The assistance from CIEE was vital to my success! I had no problems from CIEE and I would recommend the program to any friend interested in teaching abroad.

    Jessica R. | Teach in South Korea


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You don’t need to speak Korean to apply! You'll need a bachelor’s degree in any field, along with a few other qualifications. These, plus a sense of adventure and a real desire to cross cultural boundaries and engage with people eager to learn English, make you a great candidate.


  • Native English speaker
  • A bachelor’s degree in any field
  • Citizenship in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Ireland, South Africa, or the United Kingdom
  • A commitment to 12 months of employment
  • TEFL certification is required for public schools and strongly recommended for private schools
  • Applications must be 52 years of age or younger in order to receive a work visa

To make your application stronger, highlight additional qualifications, such as:

  • Experience studying, working, or volunteering abroad
  • A degree in English or education
  • Experience instructing children

TEFL Certification

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TEFL Certification

Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) certification gives you the skills, experience, and confidence to make teaching abroad even more rewarding – both for you and those you teach. The CIEE TEFL 150-hour certification course can easily be added on to your program to ensure that you:

  • Develop an awareness of the field and practices of TEFL
  • Understand the components of English related to teaching nonnative speakers
  • Get personalized feedback from an experienced TEFL tutor
  • Can design lessons for TEFL students at a variety of levels
  • Complete 20 hours of practice teaching experience to hone your skills

Learn more about TEFL.

Our Team

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Ready to change your life?

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